November 18, 2006

Bo's Last Request...

1929 - 2006

We'll miss you Bo...

Just after former Michigan football coach, Bo Schembechler passed away he reached heaven. As he arrived at the pearly gates out walked former Ohio State coach, Woody Hayes with his hand extended in a gesture of friendship.

Coach Schembechler looked his old rival square in the eye and said, “I’d rather burn in hell!”

So, God granted Bo his last request...

OHIO STATE - 42 ( Final Score ) MICHIGAN - 39

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Apple Turkeys?

Hello, I'm Tom, the apple turkey!

One of my favorite holiday traditions as a young boy was making apple turkeys on Thanksgiving Day. I remember waking up to the smell of turkey roasting in the oven mixed with the smells of apple, pumpkin and pecan pies cooling upon wire racks on the kitchen counters.

Breakfast was always cold cereal and juice because mother was far too busy preparing the feast to be served later in the afternoon. Morning entertainment was always easy. My brothers and sisters would all gather around the television and watch first the Rose Bowl, then the Orange bowl, and last but not least, the grand daddy of them all; the Macy’s parade with Santa Claus on the very last float.

In those days you never saw a single Christmas decoration in any store until Santa had appeared in the Macy’s parade. It was always the signal that the Christmas countdown had officially started. It was a wonderful time to be young. Once the last of the marching bands had passed and the final float had received its share of oos’ and ahs’ and the parades were over, boredom would set in and we’d begin to move towards the kitchen and the lure of forbidden goodies.

This would always bring about the beginning of apple turkeys.

As soon as mom would notice the approaching horde of children attempting to invade her kitchen she’d reach up into one of the cupboards above the sink and bring out a bag of apples. She’d walk into the dinning room and set the bag upon the table.

Soon, there would be five children sitting in chairs around the table choosing apples from the bag and waiting patiently as mom would begin bringing the necessary ingredients to begin the making of the turkeys. Our essential contribution to the success of the thanksgiving feast was to produce one turkey for each place-setting for each guest that would be joining us at table.

Somehow, each and every year, we would complete our important task just in time for the banquet table to be cleared, cleaned and set before guests would begin to arrive for dinner.

Without further adieu, here is how apple turkeys are made...


One bag of small red apples

One box of raisins

One bag of Mini-marshmallows

A handful of whole cloves

A bowl of small green olives with pimentos

One box of flat toothpicks


Place one red apple on the table so that the stem is facing you. This is now the “front” of the turkey. The bottom of the apple has now become the “rear” of the turkey. (Or, as we call it in my family, the George W. Bush of the bird.)

Take a single flat toothpick and use the pointed end to spear three or four raisins. There should be about a quarter of an inch clear wood at each end of the toothpick. These will become the “tail feathers” of the turkey. Insert enough of the tail feather toothpicks around the rear of the apple until you have a nice full tail. (See illustration)

You will use three toothpicks with two to three raisins each for the “wings” on each side of the turkey. There should be about a half inch of bare wood on the point end of the toothpick and a quarter inch of bare wood at the top of the pick. The wings should be shorter than the bird’s tail feathers.

The “legs” of the bird will use two toothpicks for the front, each using two to three raisins each, with half an inch of bare wood on the point end of the pick. A third clean toothpick with nothing on it whatsoever will be used for support on the rear of the bird.

The “head” of the turkey will consist of one toothpick with two to three raisins on it leaving a quarter of an inch bare wood on the top and a half inch on the pointed end of the pick. Carefully remove the pimento from the olive and unfold it. Reinsert the pimento into the olive so that it will hang and become the “gobbler” for our bird. Secure the pimento with two whole cloves making the “eyes” of the bird. Insert the toothpick at about a forty-five degree angle to make the “neck” of the turkey. Attach the olive head.

The finishing touches are easy. Take a marshmallow and holding the two ends between thumb and forefinger, use a pair of scissors to cut it in half. Repeat this process until you have enough rounds to tip the tail feathers and wings of the bird.

Use the finished caps, facing forward, to make the fancy tips of the tail feathers.

The wing tips should be parallel to the ground.

Use one whole mini-marshmallow to form each of the two “feet” of the turkey.

Fun and cute as a button!

Now, name each of the “turkeys” after your favorite republican buffoon. (If you have enough guests invited for dinner your table will resemble the old congress.)

I have never seen the apple turkeys fail to delight both young and old. They are always a big hit at our Thanksgiving gatherings and I’m sure your guests will enjoy them too.

Happy holidays from our family to yours...

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November 17, 2006

Dirk's tips and tricks!

Thanks to everyone who has emailed to say hello. A number of people have asked about my links and how I get them to open up in their own separate windows. I’ll answer that question in a minute or two, but before I do I’d first like to explain why I use the "new window" technique.

I work hard on my site and just like anyone else; I get very excited when visitors come to call. It is my hope that once company is seated and enjoying my humble abode, they will stay long enough to break blog with me and sup upon the simple fare I offer up to the cultured and sophisticated palettes of those who grace me with their undeserved presence.

(Excuse for a moment whilst I wipe the brown from my nose.)

However, like any good host there are tasty tidbits I believe in serving up to my guests as an accentuating side dish. After all, who amongst us does not enjoy tasty links basting in savory sauces bubbling merrily away in sterling silver chafing dishes? While these delectable treats are enjoyable, they are not the house specialty we take such pride in serving up here at the Anne Dirk’s Liberal Holocaust Museum and All Night Diner.

Now, in my own travels along the lesser known byways, subways and small-rural-back roads of the vast internet super highway I have often stopped to visit the occasional roadside attraction. In these quaint blog and breakfast stops I too have been offered up a variety of tasty regional links. Being the gourmand that I am I sample a link, which takes me to a site, where I sample a link, which takes me to a site, where I sample a link and the next thing you know I am several hundred miles away from the lovely spot I wanted to visit in the first place. Yes, we all know what happens next...

Driving in reverse is never much fun, especially if you are now hundreds of miles from the beginning of your original journey. Repeatedly mashing the previous button on the browser and having to retrace every single t-o-r-t-u-r-o-u-s step that’s led to whatever god-forsaken-little-hole-in-the blog you find yourself in at any given moment in the wee hours of the night is not an enjoyable task. (I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but some of the sites out there on the internet are not so much fun as here.)

So, how do we solve the dilemma of serving up tasty links to our visitors without whisking them off to blogs unknown from whence they may never return?

I’m so glad you asked!

We offer up our hot steaming links served on the festive TARGET TAG tray! It’s easy, here, let me show you one I prepared earlier.

I turn your attention to the serving of links located on the right side of this page. (Notice also how well they go with cheese.) See the word, Wizard? That’s right; it is a link to one of my friends. Now, I like her because she always makes me laugh when she drops by for coffee. I think she lives deep in a magical forest in a glen filled with gnomes and little bunny rabbits. (I also think she also has a house made of gingerbread.) S-h-h-h... We’ll talk more of that later.

So, I’d like to introduce her to the nice people who come here to visit without having them wind up trapped in her gingerbread-house-of-horrors, where she performs god-only-knows-what-arcane-and-unholy rituals upon them in the secret basement located under the floor boards of her living room.

(Especially if you happen to be an innocent young man who has lost his way in the forest.)

How do I do that? By adding the magical escape tag TARGET to her link. First, we go to templates. Then we enter the scary land of HTML coding. Don’t be afraid, I’m here with you. See the ul> places where your links are located? Good... Now, just at the end of the link address where it ends with .com”. Put your cursor just behind the quotation marks and add one space. Careful...

Now, type in TARGET=”BLANK”. Well done! Now, save changes.

From now on whenever visitors open links on your home site, those links will open in a separate window. Go ahead, click on the wizard link, and when she answers the door of her gingerbread house and tries to snatch you up and put you in her basement, click on the little x located in the top right-hand corner of the window. You’ll be magically whisked to safety!

Go ahead and try it. I’ll be waiting right here when you get back.

Cool, huh?

Dude, you should have seen the look on her face when you just disappeared like that.

I think she might even have kicked a gnome...

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Hang on Sloopy...

Will you people just hold your horses for a minute!

What? Do you think I'm made of words?

Its coming.

Wait for it...

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November 16, 2006

Uh, my Nintendog ate my blogwork.

So, I had this great post for today.

It had graphics.

It had music in the background.

It was going to have my first ever You-Tube movie!

(Right in this very spot.) You'd have laughed so hard.

I'd found the most awesome font you've ever seen in your life.

I'd designed an entirely new page scheme. Can you say, fuchsia?

I even had NASCAR sponsorship!

Yes, it was big.

It was going to be my finest blog moment to date...

Then, I went downstairs to get a cup of coffee.

When I walked back into the computer suite to put the final touches on my crowning achievement, I came face to face with the horror.

There on the screen in front of me was Fang, my Nintendog. He had shredded my entire week’s effort.

I know you’re crushed. I am too.

I’m sorry...

I hope this won’t affect the link you were thinking about listing on your site.

It won’t happen again, I promise.

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November 14, 2006

All In A Moment

Sometimes married men just don’t realize how good they’ve got it in life. Everyday living is so fine with a loving partner, green plants growing in the windows and meals that come from an oven instead of a can. Its nice waking up to clean underwear in a drawer and tubes of toothpaste you don’t have to stomp on to get something on the brush. Domesticated life with a routine gets to feel kind of warm and comforting. Then comes the moment that changes everything.

It begins the day you come home from work to find your wife dressed up in your favorite outfit. Yeah, the one that makes you all crazy when she’s barely in it and has you blushing and talking baby talk for the rest of the evening. She greets you at the door with a big hug and a kiss and then ushers you into the dinning room. The lights are dim. Soft music is playing. There is a bottle of wine chilling at the table. She pulls the chair out for you and once you’re seated, she softly kneads your shoulders. Ah, heaven...

When it happened to me I turned my head to look up into her beautiful green eyes and said, “Thank you, Angel. This is the best birthday I’ve ever had.”

“It’s not your birthday, honey.”

“Oh God, I’ve forgotten our anniversary, again.”

“Stop it, silly. Our anniversary isn’t for another three months.”

“Well, what’s going on then?”

“It’s a surprise.”

The woman of my dreams serves up the dinner of a lifetime, wearing the dress of my fantasies. This is not a routine evening. It is the perfect night I’ve always imagined with a woman. I don’t care anymore, whatever surprise she is about to spring upon me, I am ready for it. Or so I believe...

We are nestled in front of the T.V. with cups of Hazelnut coffee and dessert plates holding slices of homemade-cherry-cheese cake. Both of us are teary-eyed as we watch the movie, “Big Fish”. As the film concludes I look into the eyes of my wife and tell her, “I love you so very much.”

She throws her arms around my neck and tells me, “You are going to be the best father in the whole world.”

And in a single moment, everything changes...

I’m going to be a dad!

My wife is going to be a mother!

We are going to be parents!!

Yes, in a single moment the routine is gone.

It is so very quickly replaced by a new and sometimes scary chaos; Pregnancy.

To be continued...

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I've got blisters on my fingers...

Today will be a day of rest.

Consider it a cleansing sorbet for the taste buds of the mind before the next course.

M-m-m-m-m... Smells tasty, does it not?

The elections are behind us. Time to move on.

Anne Dirk has her place in the Museum...

She wanders marble halls of solitude now, seeking out the poorer quarters where the ragged people go, looking for the places only they will know.

Tomorrow Amerika, the song continues...

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November 13, 2006

The Liberal Holocaust Museum and All Night Diner

Anne Dirk’s Liberal Holocaust Museum and All Night Diner....

Once again, thank you all for showing up this morning. I won’t take up your time with a long winded speech; I know you’re all eager to help yourselves to the buffet inside. Let me say just a few things about Anne Dirk.

(1.) She lived her life like a candle in the wind, never knowing who to turn to when the rain set in.

(2.) I would have liked to know her, but she was just a kid.

(3.) Her candle burned out long before, her legend ever did.

And with that said, I hereby declare the Anne Dirk’s Liberal Holocaust Museum and All Night Diner officially open to the public. Enjoy the buffet and please feel free to post a memorial comment on the placards provided courtesy of the Ladies Liberal Auxiliary.

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November 12, 2006

The Diary of Anne Dirk - (The final word)

November 11, 2006 (Post Election, Amerika)

Dear Diary

The man who operates the blog beneath us has been bringing my family food and bits of news about the outside world. He is very kind for letting us hide in his attic, but he is also very brave. If the Neocon storm troopers knew he was harboring Liberals he would be shot as a traitor.

Lately, the news has been confusing. The Allied-Democratic-Force-for-Freedom has been rumored to have dealt the Asses-of-Evil a severe setback in what has come to be known as The Battle of Election Hill.

The propaganda broadcasts’ of Herr Buchannan, Herr Falwell and Herr Limbaugh have been claiming a Republican victory. It is hard to tell if the reports are true, especially since everyone knows the A. M. radio and Fox Nuz are controlled by the Asses-Of-Evil. Personally, I don’t believe any of them after the attacks on Michael J. Fox. Everyone knows he is a heroic and brave member of the stem cell underground resistance.

I think the Democrats are coming to free us from the Republican oppression which has covered the political landscape of our country for many years. I have a dream that workers will return to work on Amerikan soil. There will be health care for all of the people and not just for the rich. I believe that milk and honey will feed all of God’s people, not just the fundamentalists’. I think a new dawn of hope is coming...

* Editors note: This is the final entry in the journal of Anne Dirk. Two days after this declaration of hope, her family was discovered in the attic hideout above the blog in which they had been living for two years. Anne, her family and the blog’s owner were executed in the village square as a warning to future voters.

Do not cry for Anne, I don’t think she’d have wanted our tears. (A smile upon your face would be a more fitting memorial.) As I have come to learn during the translation of her diaries, there is no victory here for the Republicans.

Yes, they shattered the physical vessel that carried the beautiful flower she was. They took her life, but they did not, yea they could not, extinguish her spirit. Anne lives on in the heart of us all. She has had the final word...

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